How to Draft in Between Sizes

It’s all nice and well if your fit in one size column, but the reality for the majority of women is that they span multiple columns. I know I do; my bust, waist and hip usually have a column all for themselves. Most Indie patterns are ‘nested’, which means that the different sizes are drafted in such a way that you can easily draw a line from one size to another. The Jade pattern is also nested for this purpose. However, the front piece has kind of a zig-zag outline, which makes drawing a neat line a bit difficult. There’s another post on how to lengthen or shorten the skirt. In this post I’ll show you the easiest way of drafting between sizes on the side seams of the Jade skirt front piece, taking my own adjustments as an example.

Step 1: Trace sizes

Step 1

Start by tracing the front piece in the two sizes that you need. So say for instance that your hips are size 5, but your waist is size 3, then you trace the lines for both sizes. If you are tracing outward, say waist 5 and hips 4, the process remains the same.

Step 2: Cut out roughly

Step 2

Cut roughly around both lines. This is to make it possible to fold it in the next step.

Step 3: Fold

Step 3

Fold the skirt according to the lines of the largest size that you cut. Do it the same way as per the instructions, starting at the bottom. There is a folding video to show this process, and a miniature Folding Practice sheet that came with your download. Because paper is stiffer than fabric, I find it easy to first make the ‘valley’ fold, and then the fold where you match the numbers. Try to fold accurately, because you’ll cut it out folded in Step 5.

Step 4: Draw new line

Step 4

Now it will be easy to trace a nice line between sizes. Start tracing from the top at size 3 toward size 5 at the hip. The hip is the widest part of the skirt, and is located at 5 1/4″ (13,5 cm) from the top.

Step 5: Cut out

Step 5

Cut it out along the new line while it’s still folded. Use some tape to hold the folds while you cut.

Step 6: Unfold

Step 6

Unfold the pattern, and it’s ready to use! You can see that the outline is uneven, and how it would have been difficult to achieve this on a flat pattern. Don’t forget to also draft a new line for the back/back lining and the front lining. For the waistband, cut the size corresponding to the waist size that you traced.

If your measurements are 3 or more size columns apart, consider not only drafting between the side seams, but also adjusting the darts on the back of the skirt. This can also be a good adjustment if you have swayback. You can do this on the pattern or wait until the fitting step included in the instructions. At that point you can also take in (or let out) the side seams and the back darts if needed.

I hope this helps! Leave a comment if you have any questions, or email us for more complex problems.

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